The legendary All Black captain and coach, Sir Fred "The Needle" Allen has died at age 92.
The family of Sir Fred have said the ex-All Black was "very happy at the end."
Allen's nephew Alex Carpenter said his uncle passed away peacefully this morning at the Maygrove Retirement Village Hospital in Orewa.
"He was very comfortable at the end."
Carpenter said his uncle, who was made a Knight Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit in the Queen's Birthday Honours List for services to rugby in 2010 had spent "quality time" with his family in the weeks leading up to his death.
Allen had previously been awarded an OBE in 1990.
Carpenter said his uncle had been active and happy in the time leading up to his death, despite being in and out of hospital for ongoing health problems in the last six months.
"He attended and spoke at the Anzac Day memorial service at the Maygrove Village."
Carpenter said Allen's daughter and two grand children are due to arrive in Auckland this afternoon for the funeral.
Allen served as a lieutenant in the 27th and 30th Battalions during World War II, settling in Auckland upon his return.
He played for Auckland and the All Blacks from 1946 to 1949, playing 21 games in the black jersey including 6 tests and all as captain.
But it is as an All Blacks coach that "The Needle" will be most remembered, winning all 14 tests during his reign from 1966 to 1969.
The New Zealand Rugby Football Union awarded him the Steinlager Salver in 2002, and in 2005 he was inducted into the International Rugby Hall of Fame.
Allen's wife Norma passed away in September 2009, and his only regret in accepting the Knight Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit was that she was not there to share it with him.
At the time of his award, John Key said: "This honour gives the people you have touched the chance to show their appreciation for your hard work, your dedication and your achievements.
"It also gives the New Zealand public the opportunity to recognise your efforts.
"On behalf of the government, my parliamentary colleagues and all New Zealanders, thank you."
John Key today said: "I would like to take the opportunity to express my sincerest condolences to the family and friends of Sir Fred,"
"He was a great New Zealander, and one who richly deserved the honours bestowed on him."
The New Zealand Rugby Union Chairman Mike Eagle paid tribute: "Sir Fred is one of the most treasured legends in rugby. He represented a great era of success for the All Blacks both as a player and as an unbeaten coach during his tenure.
"His unfailing dedication to rugby and his continuing contribution to the game, well after his own playing and coaching days, secures his place in our history books as one of the great legends of the game.
"Our thoughts go to Sir Fred's family and the rugby community he loved so much," Mr Eagle said.
All Blacks Coach Steven Hansen said: "This is very sad news. Sir Fred's achievements as a player and coach were legendary. In his later years he was a great guy to talk footy with and still took a keen interest in how the team was going. The thoughts of everyone in the All Blacks family go to his family at this time."
Labour Leader David Shearer has paid tribute saying he was sorry to hear Sir Fred had passed away, and described the World War II veteran as a "real Kiwi hero".
Mr Shearer said the string of wins Sir Fred achieved during his time as All Blacks coach was "a remarkable achievement".
Sir Frederick Richard Allen, KNZM, OBE was born in Oamaru and educated in Christchurch.
The New Zealand Super Rugby teams still to play in this weekend's Investec Super Rugby and the New Zealand Sevens team playing in Sydney tomorrow, will wear black armbands as a mark of respect.
Tonight's Round 10 Chiefs v Hurricanes match at Waikato Stadium will observe a moment's silence to remember Sir Fred.